Is Kuladevatha (Family God) worship for Krishna devotees necessary?
Actual Questions from two devotees:
(1) “Hare Krishna Prabhu, Thank you so much for all of your posts which are really enlightening to the readers. I’m a regular follower of your sites from the beginning. I have a question to ask prabhu, which has been bothering for some time recently. Is worshiping Kuladevata (kula deivam) a must in our life? I pray to Lord Krishna as my Ishtadevata and I don’t know really who is my actual Kuladevata. But, some people (reliable people) have mentioned to me that worshiping Ishtadevata alone will not reap any benefit without worshiping Kuladevata. When I searched more about this, I have found out that even Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswati Mahaswamiji (sage of Kanchi) have mentioned that “staying away from worshipping Kuladeivam is like keeping a vessel with a hole. Nothing will stay on the vessel with a hole. Likewise, no good thing will dawn on the person who does not worship his Kuladeivam (as it leads t dosha).” So, I humbly request prabhu’s explainations regarding this matter as it can help to solve our confusions. Thank you prabhu.”
(2) “hare krishna sir.i always go through ur posts n i feel happy wid ur page n answers. sir i gave my 12th std exam diz year n i failed in one subject.so i tried for diploma but i didnt had documents needed thr so i could not do it. My family member’s think thrz sumthing wrong in my KUNDALI(patrika). Sir in my kundali(patrika) it is written dat i sould worship our family god (kuldevta) (to avoid dosha). But i worship LORD KRISHNA. LORD KRISHNA said in BHAGAVAD GITA dat thr is nothing superior than him. No demigod is superior to LORD KRISHNA. Then y it is written in my KUNDALI dat i shuld worship KULDEVTA. Prabhu i knw whtever problems r thr in my life r bcoz of my past karma but my family dnt undrstand diz. i blive in KUNDALI but i want to chant LORD KRISHNA’S name only. i hav faith on him. He wil never to wrong to his devotee.
I always preach against disrespecting any other god as a devotee of Krishna.
Krishna Himself was directly with the Gopis and Pandavas who worshiped Lord Siva.
So, Krishna Bhakti need not be confused with Kuladevatha.
(I am going away from other gods after worshiping Krishna. I feel guilty. Help me! READ HERE!)
You have written very practical things that most of the astrologers say. Yes, Kuka devatha (Family god) should be respected. There is no doubt in this. Because astrology is the record of all our past karma that shows that a horoscope is the record of our karma.
Karma means doing some material things for our own satisfaction and benefits. Only when you do something for material benefits, you incur karma. So, such records of material actions and reactions are called horoscope.
In our horoscope, the 5th house speaks about KULADEVATHA, ie, Family God. Every family will be worshiping a devatha or demigod or even Krishna/ Vishnu for generations. This is your Kuladevatha.
(Why Krishna alone is the Supreme Personality of Godhead? Why Shiva Purana says Shiva as Supreme? READ HERE!)
In fact, this Kuladevatha is not to be considered as a distant god. He/ she is to be considered as ONE OF YOUR FAMILY MEMBER.
He/ she will be watching all your happenings in your family and whether you are giving respects to him/ her. If we disrespect our Kuladevatha, he/ she will feel for it as a family member. If we do not honour kula devatha (family god) sufficiently in this birth, it will reflect as Pitru dosha in our next birth.
Because of this Pitru dosha, the good things will get delayed in our family. Failure of marriages, no marriages, no children or children with physical and mental disabilities are a few effects of pitru dosha because of the absence of worshiping kula devatha.
This is expressed in many vedic scriptures. So, the astrologers recommend us to take care of our kula devta.
(What if my parents want me chanting manthras of other gods with Krishna? READ HERE!)
The god worshiped by your father and grand father is your kula devatha now. For women, their kula devatha changes as husband’s family god once they get married.
But, Krishna is the actual father for every one of us because He is our source. However, all the devathas also are originating from Krishna. So, ONLY IF you worship Krishna SINCERELY and become unattached with the material world, and see Krishna everywhere and in everything, you need not worship any other devathas. But, if you are a devotee of Krishna who may not fully detach in this birth and hence you have to take next birth, you may have to face the Pitru dosha in the next birth.
SO, unless yu are sure that you will goo back to Krishna and you will not take the next birth, worshiping Kuladevatha is needed. So, you need not stop caring Kuladevatha.
(Why Lord Shiva is worshiped as LINGA and why Gopis worshiped Shiva? READ HERE!)
Though you don’t have any expectations, it is a good practice to respect and care your Kuladevatha like caring your family member. But, it is good if you do not pray anything from your Kuladevatha. Just care him/ her and get her blessings. It is enough.
First, try to entrust yourself to Krishna and come under the full protection of Krishna. To achieve this, you must chant regularly, follow all the recommendations by acharyas to get the mercy of Krishna. Even if we have a trace of material attachments with this material world, that means we have not yet fully surrendered to Krishna.
If you are not attached with this material world and have totally surrendered to Krishna, you need not see horoscopes and there is no need for horoscopes BECAUSE YOU WILL HAVE NO REBIRTH. You need horoscopes only if you have something to do in this material world. But such fully detached people will be only one among 1000s of people. Most others may have to take further births.
So, if you still have even some traces of attachments with this material world, see horoscopes, worship Kuladevatha and follow the predictions of remedies for doshas.
If the astrologer says to honour your Kuladevatha, do that. There is an aspect in horoscope astrology that a person suffers in his material life if he or his generations have failed to care their Kuladevatha. Their Kuladevatha is believed to give some difficulties to make you come to his/ her temple. If you go to his/ her temple and offer parihars, respects and love, that devatha gets satisfied and relieves your difficulties.
(Demigods help faster than Krishna and my friends got promoted while I am not yet. Why? READ HERE!)
So, if you are half way in Krishna Consciousness and still has something to do in this material world and you have not renounced this material world, go to your kuladevta (family god) temple and offer Parihars as said by your astrologer.
In case, you are an advanced/ detached devotee of Lord Krishna and you have no prayers and expectations from any deity and you believe that you can have no rebirth, you need not do any parihars for kula devta. Just Krishna Conscious practices are sufficient. But, how can you confirm that you will not have rebirth? Very difficult. So, my humble advice is that you may sufficiently honour your kuladevatha (family god), ie, the god worshiped by the family of your father and grandfather.
Hope you are now clear about the failure of kuladevatha (family god) worship gives Pitru dosha or not.
It is my view that we will not come down in status if we respect our Kuladevatha (family god), as they are bigger than all of us. So, though you are a Krishna devotee, you can offer respects to your Kuladevatha (family god) without praying anything from them except their blessings to us to grow devotion to Krishna. At the same time, recognize that Krishna alone is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. This conviction is important.
(Why In India many gods are worshiped contrary to other countries? READ HERE!)